China - Russia

Chronology from Oct 2002 to Dec 2002

: Russian-Chinese trade in 2002 is estimated to set a new record of $12 billion, compared with $10.7 billion for 2001.

: President Jiang sends a message of condolence to President Putin for the victims of the deadly blasts at the Chechen government building on Dec. 27.

: Russian Foreign Minister Ivanov and his Chinese counterpart Tang talk on the phone, calling on the United States and North Korea to de-escalate mutual accusations and to resume dialogue. The ministers were in favor of a nonnuclear status for the Korean Peninsula, the settlement of all disputes via peaceful means, and negotiations.

: President Putin phones Chinese leader Hu Jintao, congratulating him on his 60th birthday.

: SCO holds its third experts conference in Bishkek, capital of Kyrgyzstan, to discuss the issue of setting up a regional antiterrorism center. A preliminary agreement decides that China and Russia will each provide 32–38 percent of the center’s expenses and the rest of the budget will be shared by Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, and Kyrgyzstan. Russia and China would provide most of its 40 staff members as well as the two deputy directors, while a representative of Kyrgyzstan will be the center’s first director. The center could start working in the fall 2003.

: Deputy Chief of Russia’s General Staff Col.-Gen. Yuri Baluyevsky and his Chinese counterpart Xiong Guangkai, deputy chief of the PLA’s General Staff hold in Beijing the sixth round of consultations. The two sides discuss a possible joint SCO antiterrorist exercise in 2003 and some military units along SCO border areas. They also discuss Iraq, North Korea, and missile defense issues. Baluyevsky meets with Chinese Defense Minister Chi Haotian the same day.

: A delegation of the Russian Interior Ministry, led by Deputy Interior Minister and Commander-in-Chief of the Russian Interior Troops Gen. Vyacheslav Tikhomirov, tours China at the invitation of the Command of the People’s Armed Police Forces of the Chinese Ministry of Public Security.

: Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Kasyanov reportedly instructs the Russian Atomic Energy Ministry to conduct talks with the Chinese Academy of Engineering Physics on possible cooperation in the sphere of high-density energy physics. The initiative of the talks came from the Russian side and is being coordinated with the Foreign Ministry and other federal executive institutions.

:   Russian State Duma expresses doubts about the legality of the China National Petroleum Corporation’s (CNPC) participation in bidding for the Russian oil firm Slavneft. CNPC withdrew the next day.

: Russian President Putin pays his second official visit to China. Among the documents signed during the visit were a joint statement and several others including a 10-year credit line of $200 million to be opened for Russian imports from China.

: Chairman of Russia’s Supreme Court Vyacheslav Lebedev starts the official visit to China at the invitation of his Chinese counterpart, Xiao Yang. Chinese President Jiang Zemin met with Lebedev Nov. 26.

: A 40-member trade mission from Taiwan opens a trade exhibition in Moscow. The trade mission toured the Moscow Chamber of Commerce before proceeding to the Czech Republic, Poland, and Ukraine.

: Foreign Minister Tang joined the SCO foreign ministers forum in Moscow to work on the SCO’s coordinating mechanism (a secretariat based in Beijing and the headquarters of the regional antiterrorist organization in Bishkek). An interim document was adopted to regulate relations among the SCO member states, other countries, and international organizations. Tang briefed his Russian counterpart Ivanov of the CCP’s 16th Congress and the two discussed Putin’s official visit to China in early December. Putin met Tang the same day.

: President Putin sends message of congratulations to General Secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China Hu Jintao on his election to this post. Putin’s message noted with “satisfaction” regarding “the continuity and consistency of China’s foreign policy course and the course of development of relations with Russia.”

: Two Russian companies – the Sirocco Aerospace International leasing company and the Aviastar-SP aircraft building plant – sign a contract to build five Tu-204-120 aircraft ($30 million apiece) for Chinese carriers to be delivered before the end of 2003. China also signed an option for the construction of 10 more aircraft of this kind to be equipped with Rolls Royce engines.

: President Jiang Zemin met with Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Kasyanov, who represents Putin at the APEC Leaders’ Meeting in Los Cabos, Mexico. Putin canceled his trip because of the hostage crisis.

: Foreign Ministers Igor Ivanov and Tang Jiaxuan meet on the sidelines of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) in Los Cabos, Mexico. Tang expresses shock and strong condemnation of the hostage-taking terrorist incident in Moscow.

: Chinese President Jiang strongly condemns the Moscow hostage seizure.

: President of the Russian Academy of Sciences Yuri Osipov meets in Beijing with Li Peng, chairman of the Chinese National People’s Congress.

: Georgy Poltavchenko, Russian president’s envoy to the Central Federal District, led a large Russian business group for the 92nd China Export Commodity Fair in Guangzhou. The 100-member delegation included 18 state governors of Russia’s Central Federal District. China’s Premier Zhu Rongji met with the group in Beijing on Oct. 18.

: Mikhail Lesin, Russian minister of press, television and mass media communications, began his first official visit to China for the first meeting of the working group on cooperation in the mass media – a permanently operating body of the bilateral commission on cooperation in public education, culture, public health and sport. Lesin met Chinese Vice Premier Li Lanqing in Beijing the next day. A two-year agreement on cooperation in television and radio broadcasting was signed.

: Member countries of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) held an International Forum on Investment and Development in Beijing. Russian Vice Minister of Energy Valentin Shelepov talked about three pipeline projects including two for oil (Siberia to China’s Dalian and Russia’s Nakhodka area-Pacific coast) and one for natural gas pipeline (from east Siberia to northeast China).

: President Jiang calls President Putin to exchanged opinions on bilateral relations. The two sides agreed that China and Russia should further strengthen communication, coordination, and cooperation.

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